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Saturday, June 28, 2014

Don't Call Us. We'll Call You!

Nice mix of a Western Electric film with a 70's tune. Enjoy!

That was not bad.

Of course we don't know if it works or not, but hey. Looks cool, right?


Waiting on a rear sight and some mags for it. They will be here Monday. Sigh....

Thanks for all the help! 

Oh, here. 



Look for Mas around 2:40 into it. He does not even skip a beat! 

 
 

Friday, June 27, 2014

A Perfect Metaphor.

So for the first time ever I go to assembling one of these. 



After all the dire warnings about not scratching the finish I paid little heed. Guess what. The lower on this low cost beater (don't tell it yet) survived my beating on it and seems to be functioning. Without a scratch.

On the other hand I can pick up a brand new Colt Defender and just by the act of handling it pick up a couple of scratches. No big deal as there are no safe queens here (they are elsewhere =).


Thanks to all the friends that called or gave words tonight on how to assemble an AR platform. I'm in no hurry. Great words. I have no rear sight, nor magazines for it. Yet! I DO have a complete lower and I am amazed at how similar that trigger group works to another rifle I know =)
 

Friday Night!

And I know how to have fun! This arrived today:

Well, I hope this works out since my home State is stamped on the lower receiver! 

A M-4 kit. 



As far as I can tell everything is here. This is my first .223 period. I know nothing about this platform. I had to get some help. 

Of course if the Interwebz steers me wrong I have plenty of friends to help me out. Right friends? *cough, cough*


 
 




 



 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Hey! Murphy! I Beg to Differ!



So my friend Murphy's Law accused me of riding around in the late 70's listening to the Bay City Rollers and driving 10 miles below the speed limit.  I beg to differ Sir. Went more like this.



Wednesday, June 25, 2014

UPDATE! Sheesh! Here is the 8-Track! Its That Time of Year!

So I pull the '66 Mustang out of the garage for a bath. It's that time of year. Even though garaged, it is going to need some more attention, but tonight it was simply a first pass. 

Here she is showing her younger sisters how its done. 



It is amazing to see that I need to replace some washers, grommets, and screws on the outside. I have to remember that the restoration of this car is approaching *cough* 25 years or so. 


The '71 is next in line and I turned it over and wanted to see how the new camera did with taking videos. You be the judge. A 1971 Cleveland 351 at idle. 



Quick gauge check! 



I'll take that! Anybody got any cassettes =)

For everyone that lamented the lack of an 8-Track. Dang. I hoped it would not come to this. Here is a pic of me in '79 installing a clever Pioneer FM/8-Track in the car. Traditional underdash install would not work.

Everyone Ok now? Oh ML. Performance is achieved by applying some pressure to the right foot =).   



 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Books. My Friend Speaks of Them Well.

As do I. I commented on my friends Blog that books, real dead tree books, have always been here and over the years I will pull one out that I have had for decades. Not only to feel the connection to my past but to feel the exuberance of authors that spoke fiction and what they envisioned for the future. It seems they were a bit optimistic. 

One of my favorite books is "2001 A Space Odyssey." Penned in 1968 concurrently with the movie according to some. The book and movie differ in some really important plot points but the visuals of the movie are stunning. In fact, an Apollo crew remarked after the movie that: "it was just like the movie." High praise indeed. 

First here. 


























PanAm HQ in New York NY circa 1963. I have a postcard from an Aunt that worked there oh, some years ago. 

Here is how PanAm thought it would work in 2001:




They got that wrong as PanAm no longer exists.  They did get something right though.  Back in the day traveling was a big deal. You dressed up for it. However I seem to remember looks like this back when I was served Breakfast on an Aircraft with China plates and Silverware. 







   
























Indeed. The banality of realism. 

The preceding two pictures came from guess what? An out of print book that I find fascinating and visit from time to time.




 





























So for my friend Brigid. Thanks for making me go grab a book!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Another Can of Worms!

So after running the M1 Garand class I decided to broaden  my horizons. Young minds and fresh ideas and all that. I ordered a stripped lower and one of these.  

I NO NOTHING about this platform and now am faced with assembly and oh other things like optics, sights, accessories, etc. 

Any one give a guy some good advise on what to do next for this kit 'o rifle? It will be at the range tomorrow.  

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The CMP AMC- Addendum

So the rifle and other ancillary items arrived. 

First, thanks for the positive reviews of my humble attempts to document the class and yes, I had a new camera with me! There was a growing "Camera Gap" I had to fix. 

Here is day one, day two, and day three


First came the class picture via E-mail. 





















I'm the socially inept dude on the front row in the white shirt BTW =).


Here is the paper work including a certificate to add to the "I love me wall" on heavy stock and in color. 


The certificate is filled out BTW. I just tried out my humble Photoshop skills to clone blank paper instead of the blur tool.

Oh, now with 100% more stabby! After the class I had to get a bayonet for Emily. Why? Because I can! Here is a repro of the M1 10" one. 







 























Oh, Weaponsman. Thanks for the link and great review! I concur with your statement over there (whom we don’t know, but think we might like). Thanks to Tam as well for a Tamalanch run over here. 

You might be saying this is cool and all and you want a M1 Garand but don't want to hang with my new friends in Anniston Al for three days. That's a shame as the natives are friendly and the food is great! Suppose you decide to just get one from the sales department. Ok. You can do that online right here.

After some modicum of paperwork on your part, one of these will be at your door (in a cardboard sleeve)!









 

 





















A perfectly serviceable hard case for your rifle and all this stuff.

A Certificate of Authenticity, empty chamber indicator, a clip, and other stuff. Of interest however to me is one of the best owners manuals I have seen in a long time. If you are new to the Garand, that little manual will get you up to speed in no time!

I have come a long way from somewhere in WV when a friend I just met in real life on a range picked up an empty clip left by someone and commented that I needed it for my Garand. I told him I did not have one. I hope I have atoned for that my friend! There is a CMP service and a special grade Garand here now. 

   


 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The CMP AMC Class Day Three

The CMP Store personnel were kind enough to open it just for the class before opening to the public at 7AM. We of course went! 



































Yes, that is correct. 2.5K for a Garand! They are National Match Grade though. I now know what that means =).


Then after the store, we go back to the Armorer's shop for final preparation for test firing. One of the Armorers is giving my rifle the once over and declared that the first stage of my trigger was "mush". He suggested I get another trigger and hammer and try again. This of course meant I also had to do the "trigger job" over. I hesitate to use that term. The purpose of this activity is to retain the proper two-stage trigger yet remove the creep in the second stage and retain the spec of at least a 4.5 pound trigger pull. Luckly I had time to do that and the Armorers had enough time to offer tips and other guidance to the other 19 students before we went to test fire. It is obvious that they want us to leave here with a "Special Grade" rifle! 

So right before lunch we travel to the test fire facility. A heavily modified shipping container with all the stuff on it. 

Oh, I also got the cool T shirt you see here on other students. 

The head Armorer performed the test firing of 8 rounds. He hands the rifle back with the first casing fired from it. A nice touch. Then back to the shop for a class photo. It will be emailed to me. 

Then lunch and after that we talk about the stuff that requires attention that has a tendency to loosen up over time, lubrication, and other items related to keeping it running. 

Then, a glass bedding demonstration:










 



  






















The idea behind this is to fill in the gaps between the wood and metal with epoxy to insure a repeatable relationship between the two during a course of fire. I will probably never do this as I fear the rifle will shoot better than me right now anyway =).

After that, the formal portion of the class was done, but the Armorers said they they were at our disposal for the remainder of the afternoon! I dropped off an M-1 Carbine for a complete technical inspection and 100 yard sighting in. 

Then I placed my rifle in a hard case and shipping box for the ride home. I COULD have taken it with me, but the sales tax in AL is higher than my home state and the 24.95 shipping rate was agreeable. 

I received an e-mail Monday with the shipping number from Deshay at CMP and the rifle arrived Tuesday. 

I of course had to forgo the canvas sling supplied and go with a Turner 1907 leather sling. 



Above: CMP Service Grade M1 Springfield.  Name is Charline!

Below: CMP Special Grade M1 HRA. Name is ??? I think it looks like an Emily, what say you?

I cannot say enough about the class. My thanks to the Armorers John, Ryan, and Chris. My thanks as well to the person that herds the cats around the Custom Shop and made sure our paperwork was in order and all the other ancillary tasks that made sure the class went well, Deshay. The entire organization treated us with the utmost respect and made sure that we were completely happy with our rifles and the class.   

There is no way you can pick up John Garand's masterpiece of design and not feel the history behind this storied rifle and the people that carried them into harms way. If you desire to own one and learn more about it, I cannot say enough about this class or the CMP. They have both the passion and the knowledge of these tools and it shows. It is one thing to be a subject matter expert and another to relay that knowledge to others. They have that down pat too. I was not expecting that pleasant surprise. 





Wednesday, June 11, 2014

USS Laffey (DD-724) Work Party!

From the USS Laffey Association:

"ALL HANDS:

We are booked on the Yorktown for our fall work party.
Arrival date: Sunday October 19. Compartment available after 0900.
Depart date: Saturday October 25.
Please let me know if you plan to attend so I can keep track of how many will be there.
Sonny Walker
 
 I don't know if work will allow this or not, but I'm going to try!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

CMP AMC Class Day Two AAR

So we jump right back into it. First we pick out an operating rod. They have a great gauge to check for proper bend and length.


After that we pick out the rest of the parts from bins of them. Again the Armorers told us what to look for when selecting parts and kept a close eye on us as we selected used refinished parts for our rifles. 


Next, the trigger group. Here it is assembled:



The toughest part of the assembly in my opinion. That spring is strong! NO GREASE or lube of any kind in certain areas. In fact, the Garand was designed to be fired "dry" and was in Korea due to the cold temperatures turning grease into muck.

Then we learned all about the rear and front sights. We actually installed an early WWII "lockbar" rear sight on our rifles "just in case we ran across one."



Then we moved to the later version of the rear sight AFTER we totally disassembled and cleaned it. You really need special tools for that and they had them. Here is my rear sight. 


Then we move on to assembling the remaining internals and learn about bolt timing. Bolt timing is the proper release at the right time of the bolt forward when a clip is inserted. Timing of this is accomplished by lengthening the tab on the bullet guide or shortening it. As the instructor said, the bullet guide has nothing to do with guiding the bullets, but sounds cooler than "L shaped piece of metal." 


We are now ready for some wood. New Walnut stocks and hand guards await. The rifle is assembled and ready to be mated with the wood. 


This required some work on the wood as the trigger group would not close. You want a tight fit, but not so much that you damage the trigger group lugs or the stock. 


If you look to the right of this picture you can see the lead Armorer using a fabricated jig to facilitate the removal of wood on the bottom of the stock where the flat part of the trigger group mates with the stock. Oh, of some interest to me in this picture as well is my rifle! 

We proceed with function checks in preparation for test firing on the last day of class. We were supposed to go to the CMP store today, but they just released some International Harvester M-1's for sale to the public today when they opened. Just like a new iThingy, people were lining up overnight on Wednesday for that and we did not want to get anywhere near it! 

My rifle is complete and I can proudly say I built it!  



 











Saturday, June 7, 2014

CMP Advanced Maintenance Class. Day One.

So the trip looked like this from the car:


Yes my friend ML, I did run the thing faster than 38 MPH!

I wind up at the CMP facility in Anniston AL. I'm here to assemble a Special Grade M-1 Garand for a three day class. 

Twenty students get started. First, we pick out the heart of one of these. A receiver, gas cylinder, stripped bolt and a new Criterion barrel. The three armorers guided us as we picked through bins of parts even after we were given a lecture and power point on what to look for and what to get. 

First was bolt lapping. 


This is the method of using a mild abrasive compound to insure that the bolt meets the receiver with maximum surface area. You apply the compound and rotate the bolt in and out of battery to achieve this. You can see that I have removed most of the finish on the lugs here (shiny parts on the back). Almost 85% there. That's good enough!    

Then we go on a tour of the facility. 





Lots of rifles! They are awaiting inspection and grading.


This case denotes 50 Springfield Armory M-1's. Rack grade and ready for further processing.




 Same deal here. 



Need any ammo? They have it, but these pallet loads are to support the mission of CMP.  Training. 




Sigh, Look at this:



This is where the rifles get sorted. Some go to auction, some are stripped, and everything in between.

 Then we go to the air rifle range. There are only two of these in the US. The Olympic shooters train here. 



Scoring is electronic and in real time. 

Looks like you can spend some money on a tricked out air rifle just as much as any other one.



















    












Then after lunch, we get to it. We are going to install the new barrel into a HRA receiver. Barrel timing is discussed. We want the barrel to be "crushed" into the receiver, yet have enough play to time the barrel.  

Timing the barrel means that you achieved the crush, yet have enough play to get the front sight mount in the proper alignment. 


Here is the BHW. This is a receiver wrench.  The barrel is placed into a vice and then we go to it. 


























A simple yet effective method of aligning the front sight with the receiver is taught. Using two steel rods, one on the front sight pad and one on the receiver we get this. 


This is close, but needs a slight tweak. 


Random people doing the same thing.



 












Then the barrel reaming. This is a BIG deal! It took two passes with the reamer to insure bolt lockup and good head space. We used "NO-GO"and "GO" gauges to watch the progress of our efforts.

Here is my first pass attempt on that! 

That was the first day. More later!